A (temporary?) retirement

Hello, dear readers!

This is a quick note to say that, although my standard glacial writing pace still applies, I am writing over on my newer blog these days.

I have no intentions to shut down In Awe of Ataraxia yet, despite not having written anything here for (shudders) seven years. But, as I am no longer conducting the same level and type of research which first inspired this blog—having started writing more poetry and creative non-fiction—this site has gone dark, for now.

Please join me on my new B • LOG, if you’d like. See you later!


Gloom – Part 5

Dawn arrived with the hesitant kiss of rain. The storm had passed but an hour ago, leaving in its wake the bedraggled and weary crew of Lady Rhia. Rudder affixed, and crew abed, a lone deckhand remained awake on watch in the early unlit morning. The boy shivered in place beside the mizzenmast, wrapped in an old patched quilt. He blinked uncertainly at the wall of fog ahead, and yawned. “I should wake the skipper,” he mumbled drowsily. “Shouldn’t be long now.” Slipping in and out of sleep, he barely noticed the soft aria of birdsong drifting past the ship like a ghost.

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Musings on Web Design & More

Greetings readers. I realize my posts have been few and far betwixt, and I attribute this to third year Media Theory courses. Even now I should be writing my extended critique on Smallville’s application and appropriation of television technical theory, but am taking a break to gaze at lines of CSS and HTML in an attempt to better understand the Visual Formatting Model (my current dominatrix). I have found that I quite enjoy design, and could even be “good” at it if I apply myself. I attribute this possibility to years of computer customization, especially time spent on MacThemes Forums. Maybe, if I may be so bold, I have developed a taste for it.

Of course, taste is little without talent, at least when it comes to production (you’re safe, appreciators and -philes). So, put simply – practice and trials are in order. I very much look forward to them.

This is my first, current, nascent project; a website based on less-than-cerebral music reviews. By this I imply not poorly conceived, badly written anecdotes, but rather reviews based on metaphorically sublingual descriptions of residual emotional content bequeathed by (hopefully) good music. We shall see.

It is far from finished. But, it will get there eventually. Feel free to leave criticism/huge heaps of praise.

As always, I hope life is treating you decently.

– Daft

Gloom – Part 4

A wooden table creaked in greeting as the walls around it danced in lento. Vespar stood alone nearby, gazing languidly at the flicker of a galley fire. Having had the good fortune of finding a single ship in port, he had arranged a deal with the captain, a wizened yet powerful-looking Mercury adept with a disconcerting gaze. Demetri had been told an eerie tale before their departure, and it had hold on his mind.

“Lately, there’s been talk of these storms being caused by some kind o’ creature out off the coast of the Foregone Isle. Now lad, I ain’t the superstitious type, but the number o’ good ships been lost near that spot of late… a man should never be too careful of the risks.”

“Indeed, sire,” Demetri had conceded.

“I can see you’re a rather gifted metallon adept, son… you think you could ward off any potential blight to this ship?”
Vespar’s eyebrow had risen. The grizzled sailor was more discerning that he had assessed. “As you wish, Captain.”

And that had been that.

As with most merchant vessels departing from Dregvant, the Lady Rhia, a large xebec, was on its way to the port of Tzopophon, located on the eastern coast of Avönell. It carried a shipment of fine silks from Kíramyn’s temperate south coast, and had a final destination of Zårpos, the capital of Avönell. The Nodapo river ran a straight course through Tzopophon, arriving at Zårpos in about two days standard boat-travel.

The young scientist sighed. His previous vigour surrounding the quest for the Isle was slowly diminishing under the deafening crash of waves upon the old ship’s hull. He almost wished he himself were on those southern shores, soaking up the sun. His reverie was dismissed post haste, however – his objective was too diverting for him to forget it easily. He wouldn’t let his curiosity be daunted by a simple storm at sea.

The fire was almost out. After a passing flicker of resentment that someone else wasn’t dealing with it, Demetri strode over to the grate and picked out one of the larger logs from the nearby wooden box, tossing it nonchalantly on the dying flame and whispering a word. The fire flared up instantly, engulfing the log. Demetri strode back to his place by the table, contemplating what other adepts would think of Mars psynergy if they knew the complexity of its science. The word he just uttered was an alchemical fiat designed to multiply oxygen levels in a constrained space, accelerating the fire’s growth phase. The log he chose had a dense core to offset the initial burn. Mind wandering, Demetri began to wonder about water’s growth phases – and a lesson presented itself rather unexpectedly.

The scientist barely had time to react as the port window beside him flew into the opposite wall, a rush of water following its speedy wake. Fear and adrenaline gripped Demetri’s mind; he wasn’t equipped to deal with situations like this. His mind raced. Luck: the galley was above the water line; he has time to think before the ship’s central axis reverses. Problem: Time attack; rolling physics and liquid. Brine licks around the soles of his boots, the ship begins turning back. Solution presenting itself, Demetri scarcely realizes the movement of his body as his mind abandons words for more limbic symbols, eyes catching the now-sputtering fire’s grate as it disintegrates and reintegrates as a three-inch thick wheel before flying into the empty porthole.Manete, he yells at the wheel as his hand flies over a keg of rum in the far corner, its nails whistling as they bury themselves in the wood and iron of the newly-formed window. Demetri just has time to collapse on the floor before the ship’s roll axis completes, causing the newly patched hole to whine nervously – but hold.

Mouth dry, he stared up at the ceiling. I’m not one for ships, he thought with a faint smile.

Continue: Chapter 5

Golden Sun: Dark Dawn Announced [Updated X2]

Golden Sun + 3DS?

10,000 Hits

I’d just like to say a very big thank you for the five-figure hitcount. To everyone who visits, I owe much gratitude and apologies for not posting more. I must admit that with the announcement of Golden Sun DS, much of my incentive to create this project did fade – I regret this. I will be transforming the Myth of Laerad into a novel or some other such text (possibly a game?) in the future, as I still retain much of my vision and joie-du-travail.

I may also be starting a music blog soon, as that is another incredibly vested interest of mine. Hope to see you soon, and thanks again. 🙂

– DaftMonk

November + GS:DS Wishlist

Hey all! I hope your autumn hasn’t been too strenuous – mine has been at times, as I am enrolled in what basically amounts to your average Lit class on methamphetamines. I am enjoying my semester, though.

I’m sure some of you who read this blog are wondering “where the posts be at”, or if I’ll even continue posting at all. I must admit, hearing the Golden Sun DS announcement at E3 this year was a bit of a double-edged blade for me, as it did disappoint the part of me who was honestly hoping for a chance to be a part of its development process. Silly, I know, but… we must be allowed our colourful dreams, ‘else watch our worlds turn grey. 🙂

But, this hasn’t killed my creative spark for this project completely. I will continue my posting, starting today. I can’t promise regular updates due to my classes, but I’ll try to give you tidbits of what I’m working on/modifying/thinking about. For instance, here’s my personal wishlist for Golden Sun DS:

1. An Epic Backstory Reveal
As I’ve discovered from my own research, the Golden Sun series draws from an incredibly rich well: Hermeticism, focusing largely on the Hermetic Order of the Golden Dawn. My now somewhat obsolete GS3 plot, The Myth of Laerad, introduced a (potential) epic backstory to the player for the first time, in the form of the Wise One’s revelation that he was the last of a secret race who watched over humanity (read more of this here). I want the secret history of Golden Sun to be revealed in a similar fashion.

2. New World(s) & Content
In the Myth of Laerad, Weyard is still available and essential to the plot. However, there are two new worlds to explore, one above Weyard (Anemos/Ji) and one below (Mu). I desire the same amount of exploration and content in GSDS.

3. Vivid & Detailed
Admit it. You are almost embarrassed about how much you love Golden Sun’s soundtrack. Well, so am I.
In fact, following this confession, I am demanding something not-so-modest from Golden Sun DS. Said simply, I want the graphics to (at the very least) match the music.
“The game is amazing enough on its own, but the soundtrack masterfully manages to weave the unique tale of Golden Sun in our minds without visual crutch, but beautiful melodies alone. When the synth kicks in, [for example], I can’t help but see Vale in all its magical and archaic splendor, its golden straw rooftops reflecting the sun’s brilliant rays.”
– xRisingForcex
I once wrote in response to this excellent quote that “I honestly could not agree more. Songs like Aqua Rock, which aurally project the sense of water into our minds with such mystery and power, to songs like The Elemental Stars, which bespeak the magnificence of the cosmos in a simple melody, bring a kind of second sense to our experience of this series.” (I didn’t even get started on Garoh… or the various Overworld themes)

I desire that the landscape match the soundscape. Read this if you want clarification on the vivid detail part. Ah, perfect time to end with…

4. Motoi Sakuraba
Nuff’ said.


Golden Sun DS [Updated]

Screens Here

“Golden Sun™ DS: After going dark six years ago, 2010 will see a new dawn. Golden Sun DS updates the popular portable Golden Sun role-playing series with an impressive graphical style. This installment follows the story of the previous heroes’ descendants and immerses players into the magic of its adventure by pushing the boundaries of intuitive touch-screen controls. Golden Sun DS is playable on the Nintendo DS and Nintendo DSi systems.”

*hyperactive breathing*

NOTE: this page will continue to be updated

UPDATE 1: Plot Hint [Screen]
UPDATE 2: Second gameplay demo:

[Watch In HD]

Musings on Mu: The Setting


The richest environments you can imagine: highly detailed, colourful, vivid. There is a visceral sense of power in Mu, and the environments will convey it perfectly.

Huge rivers to cross; waterfalls splashing through gullies, lofty mountain passes, sacred grottos, hidden lagoons, eerie marshes haunted by will-o’-wisps and faerie lights, the ancient mists of the northern seas, the bright sun and rustling grasses of open plains, the broad reaches of sloping valleys, the wide and mysterious Western Moors… hidden glens with dappled sunlight, dusty mines with forgotten treasure, rain-soaked forests with deep pools… a small shrine next to one, and further back; a wise woman’s hut, hidden amongst the ferns… the friendly light of a candle in her window…

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